In addition to news of Missouri's statehouse, MDN maintains a vast array of database archives available nowhere else on line including legislative roll calls and the longest continuing Interent database of bills.
Until mid-2016, MDN was a converged newsroom where teams of student reporters produce stories for print, TV, radio and new media. It is the only statehouse converged newsroom and one of the world's first -- evolving as a converged newsroom before the term came into vogue in the journalism profession.
MDN was the only only fully converged newsroom of the Missouri School of Journalism where newspaper, broadcast and new media students worked together covering state government and political issues from MDN's statehouse office.
Selected journalism students from the Missouri School of Journalism were assigned to program's statehouse bureau for their Columbia reporting courses. In addition to MDN, stories prepared by the students are distributed to KMOX Radio in St. Louis, Missouri newspapers, more than half of the state's public radio stations, KOMU-TV in Columbia and KMOX Radio in St. Louis.
With more than two dozen reporters in some semesters, the program was one of the largest statehouse bureaus in the U.S -- if not the largest. It had been providing coverage of Missouri government and politics since 1972.
The director of the program was Phill Brooks, a senior faculty member of the School of Journalism, dean of the Missouri statehouse press corps and the Statehouse Correspondent for KMOX Radio -- the CBS-owned station in St. Louis.
In addition to the Missouri School of Journalism, Missouri Digital News had been supported by KMOX Radio and the Missouri Press Association. It operates under a non-profit board of directors of journalists and former journalists.
With Books' retirement from the University of Missouri faculty, he has concentrated his efforts on expanding MDN's unique set of databases on state government.